Prof. Mustafa Abbasi

Prof. Mustafa Abbasi

Prof. Mustafa Abbasi
Senior Lecturer
Multidisciplinary Studies - B.A. Program
Phone Number: 
04-8181624 / 04-8181631

Areas of Interest

Middle Eastern Studies


 My research focuses on two main fields:

The first field is the study of the social history of the Palestinian Arab population from the late Ottoman period to the end of the British Mandate. Most of my research in this field has dealt with social changes in the Arab cities and towns in the Galilee, a region in which my family has resided for centuries. In addition, a few of my studies have dealt with the city of Jerusalem and its rural environs, as well as the city of Nablus.

The second field is the history of the 1948 War and the Galilee in the first few years following the establishment of the state of Israel, in both the urban population of the four Galilee cities (Safad, Acre, Nazareth, and Tiberias), and the rural population in the districts of these four cities.

These two fields of study are interrelated and complement one another to a great extent. Familiarization with all strata and components of the social structure, including leaders, leading families, ethnic composition, internal relationships, struggles between elites, relations between the rural and urban communities, the status of the Bedouin, and more.  It is essential to understanding the outcome and implications of the 1948 war for the Arab population in the Galilee, and the way in which this society has faced the Zionist challenge and the developments since the beginning of the British Mandate.


Undergraduate courses

The British Mandate in Palestine

The History of the Palestinian National Movement in the Mandate Period

The History of the Palestinian National Movement From the War of Independence to the Oslo Accords

Ruling Families in Palestine During the Ottoman Period and the British Mandate

Changes in Arab Thinking in the Modern Era

Introduction to Islam

The History of the Muslim Empire

The History of the Middle East in the Modern Era

Religious and Ethnic Minorities in the Middle East

Arab Society in the State of Israel: Majority–Minority Relations

Master’s degree courses

 The Arab Population in the Galilee: Social and Religious Structure


1.      MA thesis: The rule and activity of the Touqan family in Nablus District from the early eighteenth century to 1823. Haifa University Faculty of Humanities, Department of Middle Eastern History. Supervisor: Professor Butrus Abu-Manneh. Date of receipt of degree: June 25, 1990.

2.      PhD thesis: Safad during the British Mandate period: Social and political aspects. Haifa University Faculty of the Humanities, Department of Middle Eastern History. Supervisors: Professor Gad Gilbar, Prof. Butrus Abu-Manneh. Date of receipt of degree: December 26, 2000.

3.      Books


1.         Abbasi, M. (1991). The history of the Touqan family in the Nablus district, 18th-19th centuries. Shfaram: Almashrik. (Arabic)

2.         Abbasi, M. (2005). Safad during the Mandate: Social and political aspects. Beirut and Jerusalem: Palestinian Research Institute. (Arabic)

3.      Abbasi, M. The cities of the Galilee during the war of 1948: Four cities and four stories. Germany: Lap Lambert Academic Publishing.2014 (English)

Accepted for publication

1.          Abbasi, M. (in press). Arabs and Jews in a mixed city: Safad during the Mandate period, 1918-1948. Jerusalem: Yad Ben-Zvi. (Hebrew)

4.      Edited books


1.          Grossmark, T., Goren, H., Seltenreich, Y., & Abbasi, M. (Eds.) (2009). New Galilee studies: Tenth anniversary volume of the Galilee Research Conference. Tel-Hai College. (Hebrew)

5.      Articles in refereed journals


1.   Abbasi, M. (2001). Safad and its rural surroundings in the Mandate period: Relations and tensions. Cathedra, 99, 115-138. (Hebrew)

2.    Abbasi, M. (2003). The battle for Safad in the War of Independence: A revised study. Cathedra, 107, 113-148. (Hebrew)

3.    Abbasi, M. (2006). Leaders of generations: The Tavri family and its leadership of the Arab community in Tiberias during the Ottoman period and the Mandate period. Cathedra, 120, 197-200. (Hebrew)

4.    Abbasi, M. (2003). From Algeria to Palestine: The Algerian community in the Galilee from the Late Ottoman Period until 1948. The Maghreb Review, 28(1), 41-59. (English)

5.   Abbasi, M. (2003). The Arab community of Safad, 1840-1918: A critical period. Jerusalem Quarterly File, 17, 49-58. (English)

6.   Abbasi, M. (2004). The battle for Safad in the War of 1948: A revised study. International Journal of Middle Eastern Studies, 36, 21-47. (English)

7.   Abbasi, M. (2004). Subhi Aldhadra: The Biography of a Safad Leader. Majallat al-Dirasat al-Filastiniyah, 59, 41-53. (Arabic)

8.   Abbasi, M., & Near, H. (2007). The general and the village: The 1948 War and its aftermath seen from the sidelines. Israel Affairs, 13(1), 24-54. (English)

9.   Abbasi, M., & Seltenreich. (2007). A leader on both sides of the border: The emir Fa’our al-Fa’our between Syria and Mandatory Palestine. Holy Land Studies, 6(1), 1-28. (English)

10.     Abbasi, M. (2008). The end of Arab Tiberias: The Arabs of Tiberias and the battle for the city in 1948. Journal of Palestine Studies, 37(3), 6-29. (English)

11.      Abbasi, M. (2008). The Algerian community in the Galilee from the Late Ottoman Period until 1948. Horizons in Geography, 68-69, 56-72 (Hebrew version of no. 4, above)

12.      Abbasi, M. (2008). The war on the mixed cities: The depopulation of Arab Tiberias and destruction of its old, sacred city (1948-1949). Holy Land Studies, 1(1), 45-80. (English)

13.     Abbasi, M. (2009). The families of the Arab dignitaries in Acre at the end of Ottoman rule and the Mandate period: Continuation or change? Cathedra, 130, 51-74. (Hebrew)

14.      Abbasi, M. (2009). The destruction of the old city of Tiberias in 1948-1949. Iyunim Bitkumat Israel, 19, 245-272. (Hebrew)

15.      Abbasi, M. (2010). The occupation of Nazareth in the 1948 War of Independence: The Arab city that survived the war. Iyunim Bitkumat Israel, 20, 101-121. (Hebrew)

16.      Abbasi, M. (2010). The fall of Acre in the 1948 Palestine War. Journal of Palestine Studies, 39(4), 6-27. (English)

17.     Abbasi, M. (2010). Nazareth in the War for Palestine. Holy Land Studies, 9(2), 185-207. (English)

18.      Abbasi, M. (2012). “Times of storm”: Nazareth and the military government, 1948-1948. Iyunim Bitkumat Israel, 22, 399-422. (Hebrew)

19.     Abbasi, M. (2013). A city in distress: Nazareth and the internal Arab refugee problem, 1948-1949. Cathedra, 146, 117-142. (Hebrew)

20.      Abbasi, M. (2013). Samakh: The rise and fall of a Palestinian Arab town on the shores of Sea of Galilee. Holy Land Studies, 12(1), 91-108. (English)

21.     Abbasi, M. (2013). The education system in East Jerusalem during the period of Jordanian rule, 1948-1967. Journal of Politics and Law, 6(4), 1-13. (English)

22.      Abbasi, M. (2014). The mountain lords: The story of the rise and fall of the Touqan family in the Nablus district in the eighteenth century. Judea and Samaria Research Studies, 23, 221-234. (Hebrew)

23.      Abbasi, M. (2014). Samakh: The rise and fall of an Arab town on the shores of the Sea of Galilee. Cathedra, 153, 79-98. (Hebrew version of no. 20, above)

6.      Articles or chapters in refereed books

Published and accepted for publication

1.      Abbasi, M. (2005). The “aristocracy” of the Upper Galilee: Safad notables and the Tanzimat reforms. In I. Weisman & F. Zacks (Eds.), Ottoman reform and Muslim regeneration (Library of Ottoman Studies) (pp. 167-184). London and New York: I. B. Tauris. (English)

2.      Abbasi, M. (2009). The depopulation of the Arabs of Tiberias and destruction of the old city. In T Grossmark, H. Goren, Y. Seltenreich, & M. Abbasi, M. (Eds.) New Galilee studies: Tenth Anniversary Volume of the Galilee Research Conference (pp. 340-371). Tel-Hai College. (Hebrew version of English version, no. 12 above).

3.      Abbasi, M. (2010). The changes in the Muslim population in Jerusalem, 1840-1914. In I. Bartal & H. Goren (Eds.), The book of Jerusalem at the end of the Ottoman period (1800-1917)(pp. 127-140). Jerusalem: Yad Izhak Ben-Zvi. (Hebrew)

4.       Abbasi, M., & Near, H. (2010). The general and the village: The 1948 War as seen from the sidelines. In M. Bar-On & M. Hazan (Eds.), Civilians in war: A collection of studies on civilian society during the War of Independence (pp. 62-87). Jerusalem: Yad Izhak Ben-Zvi. (Hebrew)

5.       Abbasi, M., & De Vries, D. (2011). Commodities and power: Edible oil and soap in the history of Arab Jewish Haifa. In M. Yazbak & Y. Weiss (Eds.), Haifa before & after 1948: Narratives of a mixed city (pp. 99-118). Dordrecht: Institute for Historical Justice and Reconciliation. (English)

6.       Abbasi, M. (in press). Time for war and production: The Galilee in a struggle between emir Fahr Alladin Almaani II and the emir Ahmed Tuba’i in 1602-1624. In M. Aviam (Ed.), From a tower of Christians to a fortress city. Fortresses and citadels in northern Israel, from the Canaanites to the IDF. Kinneret College Kinneret Institute of Galilee Architecture. (Hebrew)

7.       Abbasi, M. (in press). The situation in Jerusalem during the First World War according to the memoirs of Wasif Jawharie. In E. Dolev, Y. Sheffy, & H. Goren (Eds.), Palestine and World War I. London: I. B. Tauris. (English)

8.       Abbasi, M. (in press). The leading Arab families in Jerusalem and the rural vicinity at the end of the Ottoman period. In Y. Ben Na’eh (Ed.), Book of Jerusalem in the Ottoman period (1517-1831). Yad Izhak Ben-Zvi. (Hebrew)

7.      Refereed conference proceedings

8.      Other articles (in collections or non-refereed journals)

1.      Abbasi, M. (2001). Shfaram: Demographic and social change. In Z. Anar (Ed.), Stories of cities (pp. 271-276). Tel Aviv: Ministry of Defense Publishers. (Hebrew)

2.       Abbasi, M. (2010). Aljish: The history of a Galilee village. Jish Local Council. (Arabic)


1.         10 May 2001. Yad Ben Zvi Center for Study of Jewish Communities in the East and Hebrew University Jerusalem. First research: Safad during the Mandate period.

2.         14 June 2001. Tel-Hai College. Conference on New Research on the Galilee and the Vicinity. The Maghreb community in the Safad district during the Mandate period.

3.         12-18 August 2001. Quebec City. 11th International Conference of Historical Geographers. Urban rural strife among the Arab population in the Mandate period.

4.         3-4 February 2002. Yad Ben-Zvi. The Soviet Union, Communism, Jews and Zionism. Responses of the Arab press in Israel to Gromyko’s speech at the UN and the 29 November Resolution (by invitation).

5.         3-5 March 2002. Haifa University. International Conference in Honor of Prof. Butrus Abu-Manneh. Perspectives on the Ottoman reforms: Istanbul and the Syrian provinces: The Arab community in Safad during the Ottoman reforms.

6.         30 May 2002. Tel-Hai College. Conference of New Research on the Galilee and the Vicinity. Changes in Safad between 1840-1948.

7.         2 January 2003. Tel-Hai College. Travelers, Journeys and Pilgrims. The journey of Avila Chelbi in the Safad and Lejun districts (by invitation).

8.         2 November 2004, Jordan Valley College. The Jordan Valley as the Representative Landscape of the Second Aliya. The Arab community in the Jordan Valley and Lower Galilee in the late Ottoman period.

9.         7 June 2005. Yad Ben-Zvi. A Nation at War: The Civil Society During the War of Independence. The Palestinian community during the battle in Tiberias.

10.     5 December 2005. Bar-Ilan University. International Conference on Religion and State. Changes in the status of the Muslim ethnic group during the Mandate period and in the state of Israel (by invitation).

11.     11 May 2006. Yad Ben-Zvi. Conference on Civil Society in 1948. A retired British general in an Arab village in the Galilee.

12.      11-16 June 2006. Amman, Jordan. Second World Congress for Middle Eastern Studies. Tiberias during the 1948 War.

13.     9-28 June 2006. Tel-Hai College. Conference of New Research on the Galilee and the Vicinity. The Tavri family and its leadership of the Arab community in Tiberias in the Mandate period.

14.     9-12 July 2007. University of Leeds, England. International Medieval Congress. Sacred but destroyed: The destruction of ancient Tiberias after the 1948 War.

15.     3-7 September 2007. Tel-Hai College. Palestine and the First World War: New Perspectives. The situation in Jerusalem on the eve of WWI, according to the memoirs of Wasif Juhariya (by invitation).

16.      29-30 March 2009. Hebrew University Jerusalem School of History. International Congress, Contested Spaces: Legal and Cultural Practices in Eastern Europe and Palestine. Israel after World War II (by invitation).

17.     22 November 2010. Nazareth. Nazareth International Conference. Nazareth in the war for Palestine: The Arab city that survived the 1948 war (invited lecture).

18.     24 March 2011. Yad Ben-Zvi. Truth or Dare. The Moslem population in Jerusalem in the 19th century: Religion and society (by invitation).

19.     4 April 2011. The Center for Research of Acre and the Galilee During the Ottoman period, Western Galilee College. Ottoman Acre, History and Preservation. The notables of Acre in the late Ottoman period (by invitation).

20.      25 June 2012. Association for Israel Studies. 28th Annual International Conference, University of Haifa. A city in distress: Nazareth and the problem of internal refugees, 1948-1949.

21.      5 July 2012. Yad Ben-Zvi. Jerusalem Days Conference. Changes in the Moslem community in Jerusalem in the late Ottoman period.

22.      6 December 2012. Kinneret College. From a Tower of Christians to a Fortress City. Kalat Even Maan (Arbel) Citadel and its role in the struggle between the emir of Mt. Lebanon and the emir of the Galilee in the first half of the 17th century (invited lecture).

23.      11 March 2013. Western Galilee College. Ethnic and Religious Community in Acre and the Galilee during the Ottoman period. Algerians and other Moslem settlers in the Galilee in the late Ottoman period (invited lecture).

24.     16 September 2013. European Association of Israel Studies Conference 2013, SOAS, University of London. Samakh: The rise and fall of an Arab town on the shores of the Sea of Galilee.

25.      6 September 2014. The Arab Population in Jerusalem in the Late 19th Century and during the British Mandate. The Muslim population in Jerusalem. Lecture to a forum of supervisors in the history of Jerusalem (by invitation).

Mini-conferences and Workshops

1.          18-21 February 2009. Salzburg Global Seminar, Workshop on Haifa. Haifa before and after 1948.

2.          16-21 August 2009. Hamburg, Institute for Historical Justice and Reconciliation, Workshop on Haifa. Haifa before and after 1948.

3.          15-19 February 2010. Salzburg Global Seminar, Workshop on Haifa: Haifa before and after 1948.